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The heart of Molise: an authentic land

Located in south-central Italy, Molise extends between the Apennine ridge and the Adriatic Sea. Nature, history, art, ancient traditions and gastronomy are the treasures of this little known region. Visiting Molise means discovering it, starting from its countryside, mainly mountainous and hilly, furrowed by characteristic sheep tracks and historical transhumance routes that unite the Abruzzo pastures with those of Puglia.
The National Park of Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise reveals unexpected, magnificent landscapes and the numerous nature reserves protect the plant and animal species endemic to this area.
The survival of customs and traditions, of handicrafts and ancient arts that have disappeared elsewhere is a unique feature of the region, which makes Molise a land anchored to ancient values as well as welcoming to modern modes.

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5 days

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Best season : From September to November

Included / Not Included

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Assistance upon arrival at the airport / station in Rome / Naples

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Car rental with insurance

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4 nights in the La Piana dei Mulini Hotel

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Directions and suggestions for best beaches

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Travel accessories and telephone with Italian SIM

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Directions and suggestions for best bars and restaurants

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Telephone assistance in Italian, English, Spanish and French

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Flights to/from your home city

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Meals where not mentioned

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Travel Insurance (strongly recommended)

Itinerary

Arrival at the station, where you will be greeted by an Italy Trails representative who will welcome you, give you your travel material and take you to pick up the car you will use during your tour. You will then reach the hotel diffuso where you will stay, near Campobasso.
The hotel is an ancient residence that dates back to the end of the 18th century. Once a water mill, at the beginning of the 19th century it became a farmhouse and center for the coloring of wool. Then it was transformed into a hydroelectric power station. Today, it is a European Commission Site of Community Importance and is under the supervision of the Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities.
It is composed of small and varied stone buildings immersed in the greenery of the Biferno River Park. The farmhouse rooms are warm and comfortable with a lovely view over the park. The breakfast is genuinely prepared with homemade products. In the beautiful dining room under stone vaulted ceilings, there is the restaurant where you can enjoy refined cuisine, rooted in tradition.
The silence of the village and the natural rhythms will help you relax and you will have time to rest (as the Italians do) or to enjoy the beautiful park along the river. Upon request, the hotel’s professional chef gives lessons in the secrets of Italian cooking and how to prepare delicious handmade pasta to surprise your family and friends once you return home.
Dinner at the residence and overnight.

In the morning you will visit the archaeological area of Saepinum, also known as Altilia, one of the most interesting sites in the region and the entire peninsula. A Roman city dating back to the first century BC and located along the ancient road tratturo Pescasseroli-Candela, it preserves all the typical places of a Roman town: the city walls, the passages, the theater, the forum, the basilica, the tribunal columnatum and the macellum, a building for the retail sale of foodstuffs.
At the end of the visit, you will have lunch in a farmhouse where you can taste local products and traditional cuisine. In the afternoon you will take an excursion to Guardiaregia, where you will visit the nature reserve of the same name managed by the WWF, the second largest in Italy, with the picturesque Quirino gorges and the spectacular San Nicola waterfall. You will dine in an elegant and welcoming structure just a few steps from the Reserve. Overnight in the hotel diffuso.

In the morning, after breakfast, you will leave for a visit to the National Park of Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise, officially recognized in 1923. In the untouched nature that the park protects there are bears, wolves, chamois, deer and eagles.
At Castel San Vincenzo within the park it is possible to visit an Abbey founded in the eighth century which made Castel San Vincenzo one of the major monastic cities in Europe.
At the end of the visit, you will have lunch in a restaurant recommended by us in Scapoli, home of the zampogna (Italian bagpipes). The town is one of the few in Italy where the ancient tradition of making this musical instrument survives, thanks to the presence of expert craftsmen who have handed down the techniques for generations.
In the afternoon, you will then take advantage of a visit to the Museo della Zampogna.
Scapoli is not only famous for Zampogna, they have a rich tradition of cheese making linked to the pastoral tradition and transhumance such as caciocavallo and goat cheese. There is also the special pasta filata, and arts and crafts handed down for generations such as hand weaving, ceramics and iron smithing.
You will then return to your hotel for dinner and overnight.

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itinerary for this trip to Italy

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